I remember from a long time ago something I read by Hugh Falkus (sp) at his spey school in England. Anyway he said people tend to lean forward and or rock forward with their upper body when spey casting. He had this torture device that was a post with bungee cords that he would attach "leaners" to. I saw this on video with a well known spey caster strapped in.
Anyway it's a habit you can get into with spey or single handed rods. Let the rod do the work and stand up straight, don't rock and lean forward. It will also cause your rod tip to dip on the forestroke and take the energy out of the rod. You end up casting with your upper body and lowerback,ouch from experience.
Hope this helps some. No fish and a sore back,you have to go fishing tomorrow then
So that's my problem.Now that I think about it,it makes sense.After half a day or so I start to lose my casting ability.I don't get the sore back as much but my arms and shoulders start to get sore.I will definately watch this the next time I'm out.
I have a book by falkus on spey casting I can't remember the title for the life of me right now sorry.Anyways just as p.peril was saying it's a bad habit we all fight.In the book he has a glass of scotch placed on the brim of his cap and makes a cast with out spilling a drop.The man had true control of the spey cast .I suggest this book to any level of caster it's helped me huge.I think its called the art of spey casting not shure though some one on here will know the title.
Derek Brown also talked about this in his casting tape.I think he calls it the nodding donkey , not a nice image on the river eh. :hehe:
p.peril...thanks...I'm learning all this from reading Mike Maxwell and watching Mel's video...no wonder I'm screwed up...I just finished reading Falkus' book on salmon fishing and he's da man!...not going tomorrow, but there's a better than even money chance for Tuesday afternoon (damn this standard time!)...the worst part of all of this is that my fishing partner caught three metalheads and has no aches...my dumb Irish luck, huh?...
FLYH2O...I've been looking for the Falkus casting book for 9 months...Amazon doesn't have it and Powells has me on the waiting list...sheesh...I'll look for Derek Brown's video ASAP...
GraciesDad, in his video Derick Brown talks about not "rolling the body", it is well worth watching. I used to suffer with lower back problems from a boyhood accident so i started wearing a back belt when i am rowing the boat and fishing, now i have no problems with my lower back at all. The one i use is by simms but i think there are quite a few on the market now, tight lines,brian:devil:
If this continues to be a problem - What about some changes in equipment?
A short, progressive two-handed rod with a shooting head line(Scandinavian style), will save you a lot of effort, and reduce the need for big motions. Makes you cast more effortless. If you need long casts, use a 12,5 feet rod for a 8-9 or 9-10 line instead . Easy to cast the 100+.
Norwegian...I'm casting a 12.5 foot 8-weight already...I had been thinking of going to a longer rod...if what you say is true, I shutter to think of what my back would feel like if I'd had the 14- or 15-foot rod...
Instead of focusing on equipment, why not strengthen your back with exercises? This would help your wading strength, your casting stroke and your general health. You can create an exercise program on your own or with a professionals help. I don't mean to be flippant here - it's just another way of solving your problem. That's what counts. Happy Casting.
Had a similar problem some time back (too much stooping, bending, etc., from working in our vineyard). Had to go to 'the belt' (same kind you see folks using in stores when they're stocking shelves, etc.)
Talked to Doctor Guy and interesting point was made: I'm in pretty darn good shape (better then) but he pointed out that most back problems - excepting disk issues and a few other really 'nasties - were usually caused by weak abdom. mus. It's the stomack mus. that support your back and upper body; sit ups, isomets, etc., if done regularly will really help keep you in good shape.
The advice about keeping the abs in shape is very sound. There's another way to keep your back in good shape.....drink plenty of water. That's right, water.
In addition to keeping well hydrated, water intake helps to maintain a consistent level of spinal fluid in the backbone. When the fluid levels aren't consistent from day to day, the back can be prone to weakness and injury.
I drink at least four tall glasses a day, and now you all know why. At 6'6" tall, it's not to maintain a rosey hue.
Interesting thread. Mark, Do you have anymore info on your comment about the water. I spent last week on the road for business and find that 2 things always happen on these trips. Keeping well hydrated is difficult, and I come home with a sore neck.
My Phd brother in law in pyschology and sports medicine who is also at the highest level in Tai Chi (nationally known) has said the same thing to me about drinking water. Damm if I ever remember to do it consistently though. Guess I will have to keep trying it.
Roger on the stomach exercises also for back problems.
I noticed some back issues the first week of hard spey casting but known after that I guess that week put me in shape.
Thanks for the visual Fred, but I think that I'm plenty tall out here on the East coast chasing stripers and blues with my 9' 9wt.
John, I just did a search for an article that I've read recently supporting my statement and now I can't find it. I'm very aware of the potential frailty of the back......I may be six and a half feet tall, but I'm a very thin 190 pounds. Thankfully I work out regularly as a martial arts instructor several times a week, keeping my abs in great shape. Two hundred crunches a class will do that......
More to the point, it was when I started martial arts many moons ago that I became aware of water's ability to help with back pain prevention. The spine is important in martial arts, especially with all of the twisting that occurs from the knees to the shoulders. But Hal has further validated the point by mentioning his brother-in-law, another martial artist. Apparently it's a common theme.
These days I drink water regularly, even when I'm not thirsty. An ounce of prevention.....
Thats what I need on the river next time when spey casting to ensure my safety and to maintainin my back's strength, etc. a 6"6" martial art spey casting partner and my Camel Bak hiking water pak that I used in the Badlands and Black Hills of SD this summer to prevent dehydration. It became really important when me and my two sons were dehydrating in that desert air hiking into the high wilderness areas.
I just have to figure out how to wear the Camel Bak with my fishing vest or perhaps get one of those chest fishing vests.
Going to start drinking more water and increasing my daily crunches at the health club also.
My 55 year old Tai Chi Dr. brother in law makes me look sick as he like Double Haul instructs weekly and is really into the martial art exercises.
Hodgeman makes a back support wading belt that retails for about $29. It was designed for fly fishing and is a great wading belt and a back support belt. It, also, has a d loop on your right side and left side to attach your wading stick. Try it and you will like it and your back will like it.
Slipping while wading can stress our backs. An er doc who fly fishings recommends wearing wading boots with spikes in them and to use a wading staff at all times except when you are casting.
The same doc recommended if you can take an over the counter non steroidal like Advil to take one about an hour before you start to fish and another one when the time is about up on the first tablet. I have a POS right shoulder, and getting these non steroidals on board before I get in the water really helps.
Last but not least the danger of dehydration in the Gore Tex Waders is tremendous. I have the William Joseph Creel with the hydration system and the William Joseph Coastal pack with the hydration system. I drink 12 to 16 ounces from a bottle of water before I start walking to go fishing. I can easily go through 64 ounces of water in 4 to 6 hours of fishing. When you have a hydration system strapped on and the mouth piece right by your lips, you will drink as you need to drink. If it is in a bottle in your pack, you will not drink when you need it as it takes too much time to stop and get the bottle out.
A forum community dedicated to Spey casting, fishing, flies, and enthusiasts. Come join the discussion about trails, licenses, fishing, game laws, styles, reviews, optics, accessories, classifieds, and more!